McCormack announces extra funding for roads

Weddin Shire Council will receive $635,335 in extra infrastructure funding, Riverina MP and Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack announced on Friday.

Mark Coulton and Michael McCormack at the announcement in Canberra on Friday.

Mark Coulton and Michael McCormack at the announcement in Canberra on Friday.

The funding comes under the new $500 million Local Road and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program and is part of a broader $1.8 billion boost to Local Government Areas (LGA) across Australia.

According to Mr McCormack the package will support local jobs and businesses and will boost local economies struggling under the effects of COVID-19 and will enable councils to deliver priority projects with a focus on local road and community infrastructure upgrades and maintenance.

It also includes the bringing forward of $1.3 billion of the 2020-21 Financial Assistance Grants payment.

Mr McCormack said the 12 councils in the Riverina electorate would receive a total of $13.8 million.

Mr McCormack said the formula for the new LRCI funding to LGAs is based on 20 percent of each LGA's Roads to Recovery Funding over the five years from 2019-20 to 2023-24.

Mr McCormack said supporting councils to improve local roads and community infrastructure would have lasting economic and social benefits for communities, particularly those in the regions.

"This package will improve road safety and bolster the resilience of our local road networks, which will get Australians home sooner and safer, no matter where they live," Mr McCormack said.

"Projects could include constructing or improving bridges, street lighting and heavy vehicle facilities such as rest areas or weigh stations.

"Providing support for social infrastructure projects such as new or upgraded bicycle and walking paths, community halls, picnic shelters and barbecue facilities at parks, will help communities, especially those in regional and remote areas, stay connected."

Weddin Mayor Councillor Mark Liebich said he thought the extra money delivered by the Local Road and Community Infrastructure Program would be very much appreciated in his community.

"Country roads always need continuous maintenance and this money will help improve our local roads," Cr Liebich said.

Grant guidelines for the Local Road and Community Infrastructure Program will be provided directly to local governments by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications.

Local Government Area Roads to Recovery (R2R) five- year allocation 2019-20 to 2023-24 LRCI Program 2020-21 allocation (20 percent R2R base formula) Bland $9,249,136/$1,849,827 Coolamon $3,862,225/$772,445 Cootamundra-Gundagai $4,927,760/$985,552 Cowra $4,577,261/$915,452 Forbes $6,112,831/$1,222,566 Hilltops $8,854,838/$1,770,968 Junee $2,939,669/$587,934 Lockhart $4,232,805/$846,561 Parkes $6,688,064/$1,337,613 Temora $4,129,841/$825,968 Wagga Wagga $10,253,500/$2,050,700 Weddin $3,176,675/$635,335